Hurricane Ian has been wreaking havoc on Florida, which is a key state in the world of pro wrestling. AEW is centered in Jacksonville, while WWE’s Performance Center and NXT are based in Orlando. Naturally, a lot of the wrestlers in each company reside nearby those areas.
AEW President Tony Khan made it voluntary for people to show up to television this week. According to Wrestling Observer Radio’s Dave Meltzer, “a lot of names” were not there for last night’s Dynamite/Rampage taping in Philadelphia, contributing to a situation where some of the matches and segments were put together late because Khan didn’t know who would be available.
“There were a lot of other segments on the show, and even more for Rampage, where it had to be changed, I think somewhat significantly, because of people who weren’t there.”
Dave’s emphasis on changes to Rampage might help explain why that card (spoilers here) seems to be a bit lacking.
Meanwhile, WWE already postponed NXT house shows this weekend due to Hurricane Ian. SmackDown on FOX is set to air live tomorrow night (Sept. 30) from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. And while the worst of the storm will have passed Florida well before that point, there are some concerns with wrestlers being able to travel out of the state, per Meltzer:
“I know WWE is very worried about Friday’s show because they have so many people from there.”
“The hope was that they’ll be okay and that people can get there from Tampa and Orlando to Winnipeg on Friday night.”
Stay safe out there, folks.